Above: Library & Archives Director Eric Wakin, Ambassador Jones, and Maciej Siekierski, Senior Curator of European collections at Hoover Library & Archives.
On March 13, 2017, the Hoover Institution Library & Archives hosted Paul W. Jones, US ambassador to Poland. Jones was interested in learning more about Hoover’s world-famous Polish holdings, the largest and most-comprehensive documentation on modern Poland outside Poland. Deputy Director Eric Wakin and Senior Curator Maciej Siekierski greeted the visitor and showed him a sampling of archival and library materials, as well as posters, selected from the Hoover holdings. Irena Czernichowska of the Hoover Archives prepared the documentary display.
The presentation focused on Herbert Hoover’s special interest in Poland: his lifelong friendship with Ignacy Paderewski, pianist and statesman; Hoover’s visits to Poland; the story of the American Relief Administration’s contribution to the revival of Poland after World War I; the history of the Hoover monument in Warsaw; and Hoover’s own extensive reflections on Poland, written shortly before his death and published recently by George Nash in Freedom Betrayed. Also displayed were photographs from the papers of two predecessors of Paul Jones as US ambassadors to Poland: Hugh Gibson (1919–24) and Richard Davies (1972–78). Included in the presentation were a large selection of testimonies, release certificates, and photographs of Polish inmates of the Soviet Gulag preserved in the Władysław Anders and other Polish government collections, as well as photos and artifacts from the Jan Karski Papers. Among the most recent acquisitions presented (items not yet fully accessioned) were volumes of Stefan Cardinal Wyszyński’s diaries and a copies of the secret police “Agent Bolek” files of Lech Wałęsa.
Ambassador Jones has a wide-ranging background in Europe. As principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs from 2013–15, he was responsible for all aspects of U.S. policy and operations in Europe, Particularly in Russia and Ukraine. Before the Library & Archives presentation, Ambassador Jones met with Hoover fellows former secretary of state George Shultz and former ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul.
Maciej Siekierski siekierski [at] stanford [dot] edu